Flight is a magical word. It can conjure images of blue sky, sounds of rushing wind, and the feelings of a freedom only known by breaking gravity's bounds with a combination of lift, thrust, and fairy dust. Flight is a word so magical, in fact, that it can even make a word like "school" seem cool. Unlike traditional schools, Louis Fly Academy doesn't lock its students up inside a brick-and-mortar building filled with chalk dust and outdated science books. Instead, its instructors guide them through aerial tutorials inside a fleet of Cessnas and Piper aircraft. Such tours begin with discovery flights for both airplane and helicopter pilots to give aspiring pilots tastes of high altitudes, allowing them to take a set of the controls and to log their time toward potential certification. A series of instructional packages prepares students for such certifications, with curricula that range from courses for a private pilot's license to a multiengine rating.
The thump of the rotors. The sound of the wind. The view of the landing pad receding into the distance below. With a versatile range of motion and wraparound windows that cast the surrounding skies in a stunning panorama, the helicopter isn't merely a vehicle: it's a window into unseen worlds. The flight instructors at Flying Helicopters Made Easy want everyone to experience the wonders of flight; that's why they spend their days teaching students how to become better and safer helicopter pilots. Inside Robinson Helicopter Company’s choppers, instructors lead flights that include introductory flights, private- and commercial-pilot certification flights, and training flights for licensing. They also operate scenic flights, which allow visitors to enjoy the skies surrounding New York City while drinking in 360-degree views of the metropolis and surrounding coastline.
At Icon Aviation Group, flying instructors put four kinds of light sport aircraft to good use training future pilots of all ages, young and old, for private pilot's licenses, instrument ratings, commercial flight instructor ratings, and airline transport ratings. Pilots-in-training log hours in the cockpits of a Piper Warrior, Beechcraft Baron B-55, Mooney M20E, and Aeronca 7AC, with access to all the instruments and gauges needed for eventual solo flying. The aviation school couples its in-air instruction with classroom learning back on solid ground, where pupils can safely build confidence under the guidance and command of experienced pilots and work on honing their cabin-announcements voice.
Good thing no one ever told the pilots from New York Helicopter to keep their heads out of the clouds. Doing just the opposite has been the source of their trustworthiness: each one has logged thousands of hours of flight time, including aviation experience in civilian, military, and law enforcement operations.
With these pilots' FAA-certified hands at the controls, the company's helicopters soar high above New York City, allowing passengers to take in its famous sights. Tours of up to 25 minutes whisk past landmarks including the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Empire State Building, all while carefully avoiding the superheroes who clog Manhattan's airspace. Beyond showing off the city's skyline, New York Helicopter charters private helicopter flights, including airport transfers within NYC.
Wings Air Helicopters' band of experienced pilots advocate the beauty of airborne travel through charter services, flight lessons, and an aerial film-production studio. Luxury jets, decked out with sectional couches, meeting tables, and bars, grant passengers and their mobile studio audiences safe travels with charter and cargo services. Within helicopter cockpits, Bose noise-canceling headsets block out the hum of spinning propellers to ensure clear communication during charters and tours. Wings Air Films offers a wide range of aerial production services, supplying movie helicopters and camera platforms to capture bird's-eye shots of famous landmarks or Waldo sightings for motion-picture and television industries.
With more than 8 million people in New York City—and probably close to that many famous landmarks—the best way to see everything is from the sky. Liberty Helicopter Tours invites you to do just that as it soar over the Hudson River and right past the Statue of Liberty (as long as she isn't on her lunch break). Those sights are incredible, but they're just two of many available from Liberty's helicopters. Here are some key things to know about the company:
Background: Liberty actually took flight as a charter business in 1986, transporting professionals to and from New York. In 1990, it added its sightseeing division.
Fleet: The company's fleet currently includes 15 state-of-the-art Airbus Helicopters, which are renowned for their large cabins and reliability. Liberty's helicopters are serviced on a daily basis at their 24/7 maintenance facility.
Pilots: There are more than 25 factory-trained pilots at Liberty with an average of 10 years of experience each. Plus, many of them are former US Military or police officers.
Awards: Liberty boasts an award-winning staff, and it's a regular recipient of the Annual Safety Award from the Helicopter Association International. The company has also earned the Five Star Diamond award multiple times.
Press: Featured on season 11 of The Bachelorette.